Alpine ice climbing in the Winds, September 2021

On the first day of fall, Zach Lentsch and his former client Scott Davis hiked 26 miles into the Dinwoody Cirque in the Northern Wind River Range to attempt a possible new ice route on the North Face of Sunbeam Peak. The next day they enjoyed perfect weather and completed the climb in 7 hours from base to summit. Their line consisted of over 2000′ of roped climbing on glacial, alpine, and waterfall ice up to WI3+ and two rock pitches at the top, a majority of which was simul-climbed. They found the climbing to be moderate in difficulty but of exceptional quality. The route, which they named Ultralight Beam, scales the entirety of the Heapsteep Glacier and follows a prominent runnel system full of waterfall ice through several cliff bands until reaching a large permanent snowfield, where it trends right and follows alpine ice almost all of the way to the top of the ridgeline. Two easy rock pitches lead to the summit and an easy walk off down the East Ridge to Blaurock Pass.


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